with trainer Jillian Michaels
You will love it if:
This video is a bit unconventional for Jillian Michaels. There are 6 models (instead of 2)—all of different ethnicities. Jillian still points out easier and harder modifications for some of the moves, but there is no single model who consistently performs these modifications. There is less playful interaction between Jillian and the models in this video than in some of her other workouts. She is a bit more down-to-business and spends most of the time teaching proper form, cuing moves, and encouraging you and the models. There were also a few parts (maybe 3 or 4 that I noticed) where the models aren’t exactly sure what they were supposed to be doing, and not everyone is demonstrating the same moves.
Like many of her other videos, these are circuit style workouts where you perform multiple sets of the moves. However, they are not perfect circuits because some moves are not repeated during the second circuit and others are replaced with different moves. The workouts are also not perfectly balanced. Since most everyone will have a dominant side while kickboxing, Jillian doesn’t have you do the moves on your dominant side and your non-dominant side. Real boxers don’t do that. Instead, she incorporates a variety of different styles of kicks and punches to try to work each side evenly while doing each move from your dominant boxing stance. Overall, she does a good job of balancing things out and I wouldn’t be too worried about this workout not being perfectly “balanced.” However, working your non-dominant leg from a dominant position requires you to do a lot of spinning kick moves, and it was a little tricky to protect your knees from twisting. I would recommend taking the moves at a slower pace to avoid injuring yourself.
Each workout is supposed to focus on a different body part, but the arm and leg workouts (Workouts 1 & 2) are pretty similar and only have about 3 arm or leg specific moves worked into the routine. They are more like cardio workouts with some toning moves slipped in. The ab workout (Workout 3) is more similar to an ab workout and includes a lot fewer kickboxing moves than the first 2 workouts, but it is also the least cardio intensive of the three. So it is more like an ab workout with a few cardio moves slipped in. All of the cool-down stretches are super short, but I guess you should expect that when the workout itself is only 20 minutes. Just like in most of Jillian’s other DVDs, there are options to play the video with English subtitles or to play a dubbed over Spanish version, making the video accessible to a wider variety of people. Overall these are fun, short workouts that you will actually enjoy doing.
You need handweights for Workout 1—probably something between 3 and 12 pounds depending on your fitness level.
Besides the laps Jillian has you sprinting back and forth across the room in one of the videos, most of the moves don’t use a lot of space. (If your room is small, you might have to do high knees or something while she’s running back and forth.) Other than that, you should be able to do this workout if you have enough space to throw kicks in all directions—front, back, and side to side—around your body.
You should be able to walk briskly or do other light cardio (vacuuming, elliptical, biking, etc.) for about 20 minutes before trying this workout. You’ll also need enough balance and strength to kick your legs, preferably up to waist height.
What NOT to Expect
Do not expect a super advanced cardio workout—your heartrate will probably stay in the heart health or weight loss zones throughout the workout. There are some short bursts of heavier cardio, but they are not long enough to get you winded or anything like that.
Also, though each workout does target a specific body part—arms, legs, and abs—the arms and legs workouts are not challenging enough to really get you ripped. They are more of a cardio workout with some toning mixed in. The ab workout does a pretty good job of targeting your core muscles, but it is the least cardio intensive of the three.
How does TaeBo Cardio compare to other similar programs?
Of all the kickboxing videos I’ve done, this was one of my favorites along with TaeBo Cardio. If you're looking for a longer kickboxing, cardio workout, TaeBo Cardio would probably be your best choice. It is 45 minutes and has a few leg strengthening moves in it. The downside of TaeBo Cardio compared with Kickbox FastFix is that you'll miss out on some of the core and arm strengthening exercises, but you might be better off doing the core and arm work as separate workouts anyway.
If you are in love with TaeBo but want to add some strength training to your workout routine (specifically arm toning work), TaeBo Ripped Extreme is your best choice. Ultimate TaeBo is another video to check out if you're looking for some super long kickboxing workouts. It includes workouts that are 30, 60, and 90 minutes long. Or, if you want some super short and easy kickboxing workouts, 10 Minute Solution Kickbox Boot Camp might be a good choice. If you want something harder than this video, you pretty much have to pick a different type of workout. When it comes to kickboxing, this is about as challenging as it gets.